Having enjoyed reading about the Neil Leifer aerial photograph of Muhammad Ali, I came across an article in the Guardian which showcased the best sports-related aerial photography. I thought several of the images were outstanding:-
Swimmers contest the world’s biggest ocean race, the Cole Classic, from Shelly Beach to Manly Beach in Sydney, Australia, in 2010. Photograph Steve Christo for Getty @Images
This image is akin to an Attenborough-witnessed fish feeding frenzy as the white splashes of the swimmers surge forward through the water. It almost dimishes the humans in the image to tiny microbes which combine to form a much stronger force, pushing forward over the ocean. I think its a beautiful image and the tiny coloured dots of the swimmers caps add additional interest.
Cross country skiers during the 2012 Engadin Skimarathon near St Moritz, Switzerland. Photograph by Arnd Wiegmann for Reuters.
The apparent blizzard of snow falling on top of the skiers has rendered this photograph almost like a painting. The criss-cross of the skis as the skiers clamber their way along the course give the image a rhythm and texture. The tiny limbs put me in mind of Lowry’s famous stick-men characters.
Thailand’s Nina Lamsam Ligon, on Butts Leon, rides past spectators as she competes in the evening competition at the 2012 London Olympics in Greenwich Park. Photograph by Adrian Dennis, for Getty Images.
The shadows provide all the story in this photograph as you can only actually see a small part of the human’s and horse’s head and torsos. I like the rhythm of the standing spectators, some poised and ready with their cameras, and the feeling of speed generated by the horse’s flared tail as it gallops along the course. The curl of the horse’s legs capture is timing perfection.
Serena Williams winning the 2010 Australian Open. Photograph from Back Page Images/Rex/Shutterstock.
This is a photograph I remember seeing at the time it was taken. It has a very strange perspective and almost looks as if Serena Williams is velcro’d to a wall together with her tennis racquet which seems suspended in mid air (given the shadow). The white lines are forming compartments in the image for the subjects to be ‘thown’ into. The colours are striking and its an altogether joyful victorious image.
With the ever-increasing use of drone technology these types of images are going to become common place for sport photography and it will be interesting to see if the fine art leaning of some the images also becomes equally as widespread.
Bloor, S. (2018) Hitting the Heights : Sports Photography from above : In pictures. At https://www.theguardian.com/sport/gallery/2018/jan/04/hitting-the-heights-sport-from-above-in-pictures?CMP=Share_AndroidApp_Email (accessed 22 January 2018)